When should I get a fuel injection flush?
When you are maintaining your vehicle, it is important to service every component of the engine in order to keep it in great running condition so you do not have future issues. You change your engine oil and transmission fluid, but there seems to be a lot of controversy over flushing your fuel injection system. Some technicians say it’s a waste of money, whereas others see the benefit.
Let me elaborate on this. If the manufacturer of the vehicle states this service should be done, then you should really take precedence of this over what other shops or sources are saying.
There are many benefits to the fuel injection service and we will discuss this in more detail.
The fuel injection service should be done roughly every 30,000 miles or when directed to do so by the manufacturer. To find this out, check your owner’s manual for scheduled maintenance. It will keep any debris that is in the fuel from clogging up the fuel injectors.
Fuel injectors are nothing more than an electrical solenoid that opens and closes in milliseconds controlled by the engine’s computer to allow the fuel to enter the combustion chamber. At the end of the fuel injector there is a small micron screen that helps to atomize the fuel by spraying it in a certain pattern. If this screen gets fully or partially clogged, you would have to replace the fuel injector which is not cheap by any means.
Most technicians will understand that a partially clogged fuel injector is as bad, if not worse, than one that is not working at all. If you have a partially clogged fuel injector, it can cause intermittent issues with the way the vehicles runs, the amount of power on acceleration, and may cause engine lights to turn on. Never mind the fact that if you do not have enough fuel going into one of your cylinders for a period of time, then this could create catastrophic failure inside the engine and melt pistons and or valves from an overheating. This condition is know as "running lean" and is far better to burn top much fuel than not enough.
Not only does fuel burn to produce power, but it also helps to cool down the internal engine temperatures. It also helps to lubricate and stop corrosion. Always consult the manufacturer on when the service should be done, but it also depends on your driving habits. If you do not drive highway speeds or on the interstate, or if the vehicle sits for long periods of time without being driven, these are reasons to do a fuel injection flush sooner due to the possibility of getting deposits in the fuel rails and helping to clog the fuel injectors. If you let your fuel tank go to empty this is also a bad thing for your fuel pump.
Believe it or not, the fuel helps lubricate and cool the fuel pump as well, so try not to drive with under ¼ of a tank as much as possible. The fuel pump needs to stay immersed in fuel to be able to function properly and not overheat. The number one reason for a fuel pump failure is driving with low fuel.